Tires are a vital component of your riding arsenal as they are the only contact point with the road. Through the tires the rider will "feel" the road and receive constant feedback about the road. For example, if the road is wet and the tire starts slipping, the rider will feel that and correct it. Tire manufacturers construct tires with various levels of smoothness, grip, firmness all which factor into the quality and feel of the ride.
Vittoria Diamante Pro
Great for all-around riding and racing, the Diamante Pro is composed of nylon-and-Kevlar with a "rhomb" tread pattern providing for great wet traction. The tire can handle up to 220-tpi and weighs in at 195-gram a tire. At $50 as of April 2010, it is one of the best bargains in road tires.
Continental Grand Prix 4000 Tire
The GP 4000 tire is known for it's "out of this world flat protection" according to Bicycling Magazine. The Grand Prix is constructed of a belt of Vectran which is used in NASA space suits and protects the tire against punctures. A nice feature of the tire is the tread-wear indicator to let you know when it is time to buy a new tire. The GP 4000 has max pressure of 125 psi and comes in eight colors to match your kit or bike.
Vittoria Open Corsa EVO-CX
The Open Corsa tire sets the bar high with a smooth, quiet ride and superior rider feedback. The tire is lightweight and built for high performance, which it delivers superbly. The downfall of the design is the tire does not have the durability and longevity of a tougher tire, which means frequent replacement.
Michelin Pro3 Race
The Pro3 Race tire likes to roll fast and take corners hard. It features a Silica Energy dual-compound and a grippy shoulder compound. Michelin claims the Pro3 is 40 percent grabbier than its Pro2 Race, while still offering decent puncture protection. The narrower version is frequently used at the ProTour level.